The Value of Rituals and Ceremonies

For thousands of years, human cultures have celebrated their lives with various rituals and ceremonies. Since we began pursuing “rational thought” and moving away from the spiritual limitations of most religions, we have also reduced the spiritual practices which often include rituals. Our modern North American culture has replaced these time honored practices with poor modern substitutes. Sure we have wedding ceremonies and graduation ceremonies but these are often built in to our consumer driven economies. Just ask how much a wedding can cost these days… Our modern rituals look more like our visits to the drive throughs fast food restaurants or worshipping in line as we wait or our morning coffees.

We often forget to celebrate the memories and wisdom of our ancestors. Sure we have funerals or memorial services, but how many of us light a candle on the anniversary of our beloved family or friends who have found their way through their final life transition. When I participate in a Native American Medicine Wheel ceremony or a Solstice ritual, I realize the value of these traditions yet these feel unfamiliar to me. There are reasons that our ancestors celebrated the changing of the seasons and honor the four directions and four elements. We can still benefit from pausing in our lives to honor Mother Earth, the Universe, and the Ancient people and cultures who walked the planet before us (in this incarnation.)

Rituals and Ceremonies can cause us to stop and remember our heritage. Instead of being inconvenient or expensive packaged products like weddings and funerals have become, we might consider more natural and heartfelt honoring which are born of simplicity with deep authentic emotional expressions. And, no, special food at your Super Bowl party does not count as the heartfelt offering of which I speak.

Perhaps you can create unique ceremonies or rituals for your children or family and friends. Find a local Labyrinth and slow walk a Zen Meditation as you find your way to the center and then back out into our world. Maybe you do not even require a Labyrinth but can follow a trail or beach to a special spot and build a rock cairn to ground yourself in Earth energy and presence. Any visit into natural settings can become a ritual to honor life and spiritually engage to find a “Re-Enchantment of the Cosmos.” If treading a path outdoors is too much, consider lighting a candle. Calm your mind and honor your spirit as you gently breathe and gaze into the dancing natural light. Be as our ancestors sitting around a fire to share stories and wisdoms learned from our elders. (Yes, even if you have to turn off your technology for a few minutes…)

Create the rituals and ceremonies that find form from deep inside you and honor these expressions. Know appreciation and gratitude for all the miracles of life which have brought you to this present moment. Smile with Joy as you find the warmth in your heart as you bless our ancestors. One day, some culture in our future will look back to honor the lives we have lived and the spirit we have demonstrated, AND possibly the wisdom we leave for them to know. Walk respectfully and model for our children the love and honor we have for our ancestors…

If you are READY and looking for a supportive community where you can share your story, your wisdom, and grow spiritually in a non-religious environment, consider Masters of the Journey.
You are a Blessing! You are a Master! Your wisdom from your life experience can have great value to other pilgrims on the path toward awakening and enlightenment.

The Masters of the Journey has events which are updated on our Facebook page which is found at: www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney Please comment on this blog and share, if appropriate. More of our blogs are based on spiritual consciousness and can be found at www.dstress.com/blog

Time to Wake Up! Remember Who You Are!

When you awaken and remember who you are and where you came from, you are granted a few moments in an enlightened state! Sure this is easier said than done. Sure it is elusive. And, once achieved, it may seem impossible to hold this experience in your consciousness for living day to day. BUT, once you have known the moment of “Enlightenment,” you are changed forever! People who have returned from a Near Death Experience (NDE) report profound change in the way they feel and then in the way they live their lives. NDE returners may have felt: Unconditional Love and Acceptance, Freedom from Fear of Death and the 3 Dimensional Limitations we have, Oneness and Connection with all aspects of our Universe, some access to the Wisdom of the Divine Spirit, and the Knowing (and Remembering) that at the core of all life is the power and energy of LOVE.

The question is, when will YOU experience this profound insight? When will You know unconditional love? When will you remember that you chose to come into your current incarnation with the divine purpose to learn in consciousness and to support the fellow pilgrims you meet along your path?

An even more basic question to ask is, When and how do you break from the assumption that your mind and ego are not your “controllers” and are simply a part of the challenging lesson you are here to learn from? A deep connection with the Divine Spirit is a lofty expectation but how can you do this without having to have a Near Death Experience? Often we know that “Fear” keeps us in a state of separation. Isolated and alone in the “Judgements” we seem to make for the survival of our Ego. Eventually, we remember that we are NOT alone and we are all in this search for higher consciousness, together! We are here to share the experience with the weird and wonderful people and situations we find ourselves bumping into as we stumble through life.

No matter where YOU are on your path toward higher consciousness, you will find a way to quiet your fear and remember your connection to the Divine Spirit. You are a perfect hologram and piece of the foundation of all consciousness. Even with your flaws, you are perfect and unique. Though I struggle with finding acceptance and even perfection in the weird behaviors I experience, I endeavor to see the value and better understand the strange connections we all have, even to the most repugnant human activities. A wise friend has asked me to consider not sitting in Judgement when I disagree with a behavior I encounter but rather ask, “What has happened in this person’s life to create a person who can act in this way/behavior?” It does not mean you learn to like or enjoy seemingly negative behaviors but attempt to understand the source so you can rise above the drama… Life was not meant to be easy or without pain. We learn from our failures and our pain. So accept that other people reflect their imperfections as lessons for ALL of US!

You are a Blessing, whether you know it or not! You are a perfect reflection of the Divine Spirit! At some point, probably when you least expect it, a moment of Enlightenment will drop into your consciousness and you will be changed forever! (Though integrating this event may also prove to be a challenge and take you in unexpected directions.)

By the way, you have heard this before (probably,) allowing yourself to quiet your mind through meditation and the practice of being “in the moment” (more fully “present,”) will offer one of the very best tools for controlling fear and opening doors toward developing higher consciousness. (Sure this is easier said than done, but an important step for many of us who walk the Earth plane…

If you are READY and looking for a supportive community where you can share your story, your wisdom, and grow spiritually in a non-religious environment, consider Masters of the Journey.
You are a Blessing! You are a Master! Your wisdom from your life experience can have great value to other pilgrims on the path toward awakening and enlightenment.

The Masters of the Journey has events which are updated on our Facebook page which is found at: www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney Please comment on this blog and share, if appropriate. More of our blogs are based on spiritual consciousness and can be found at www.dstress.com/blog

Distracted by the Loud Voices of Fear!

It is difficult to not be distracted by the small, but loud, voices of fear which our mind uses for self-protection! Rather than being allowed to be undistracted and focused on my path toward higher consciousness, I find myself ruminating on some smaller, myopic event or situation which, in the long run, is simply a test of my ability to be fully present and engaged in a more Universal vision. Sure, I do not want a bus to hit me as I cross the street but after I step back on the curb, is it necessary to turn all my consciousness to that near accident for the rest of the day? Can I return to being more fully “present” and continue down my path of learning and serving the Greater Good?

Can I return to remembering that I am a Miracle and child of Consciousness rather than a victim to fear? Wow, much easier said than done this letting go of fear process!

Fear bubbling up from the past or anxiety regarding the possible challenges we face in the future are two of the largest distractions we experience. Playing the “What if Game” in its negative or fear filled way are so common and for most humans causes us to suffer. Do not think that I am taking a difficult challenge too lightly when I say, “What is the worst that can happen?” For the mind and the ego, we might not physically survived the experience. For our soul, we can know the challenge and say in equanimity, “the worst that could happen is that I die and get to come back into another lifetime.” We come full circle and get to live another lifetime with the pleasures, the joys, the sorrows, and even the painful lessons which make living in human form so wonderful, at least as a learning experience.

I am told by many sources that the thing which is a regret most reported by people in their final transition is that they did not push through their fear and live their emotional and spiritual desires. They played too safe. They went for the “golden ring” of financial success rather than chasing their passion. That they lived up to other people’s expectations and not their own! Try to NOT be the person who on your death bed regrets that they played it too safe or spent too much time chasing financial success BUT missed out the greatest relationships or travel or adventures. But, no worries, you will get to come back and try to remember this lesson so in your next incarnation you will get to choose a path which will lead you to the highest adventures and greatest challenges so you can push the limits and engage in the lessons which will assist you to move closer to 24/7 enlightenment.

Do not “sweat the small stuff.” When you catch yourself ruminating on the petty experiences in life YOU ARE HALF WAY THERE! Yup, you have the “Awareness” that you have chosen to fixate on fear or anxiety. The very next step is to learn to let go. To meditate on BEING FULLY PRESENT! You think this is easier said than done and if you do think this way then you are caught in the trap. The mental/emotional trap which has created this limitation. In an instant, you can let go and find the joy in living even when you find yourself in a painful situation. It is a joy to learn and move through your pain. You have learned a valuable lesson that can assist you AND everyone else you can share this experience with. You are here to serve and it is better to have lived the tough lessons so you have valuable experience to share in the stories you can tell.

So next time you catch yourself being distracted by the LOUD voices of Fear, honor your new awareness, take a deep slow breath and become more fully present. Perhaps even laugh at yourself because you caught yourself cycling again in a petty rumination AND bless the experience as you find the JOY of living most fully. You are a Miracle! You are a Blessing! NO ONE else can do YOU as well as you do you! Your role is to interact with your environment and with the people you bump into in the most conscious way you can find.

Thank you for reading this far into this message. No one said, or really meant, that life was easy! The challenge is a test. You are here to learn and to grow. Your life is truly amazing! And, you will remember where you came from and that you are an essential piece of the Divine Spirit! Where possible, share your lessons. Support other pilgrims and allow others to support you. This is a great gift in allowing others to give to you. You know how good it feels to give!

If you are READY and looking for a supportive community where you can share your story, your wisdom, and grow spiritually in a non-religious environment, consider Masters of the Journey.
You are a Blessing! You are a Master! Your wisdom from your life experience can have great value to other pilgrims on the path toward awakening and enlightenment.

The Masters of the Journey has events which are updated on our Facebook page which is found at: www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney Please comment on this blog and share, if appropriate. More of our blogs are based on spiritual consciousness and can be found at www.dstress.com/blog

Listening to That Small Voice in Your Soul

Yes, it is time to remind myself and “you” to pay attention to that ever present, though quiet, small voice. Not the judgmental narrative of the mind BUT the sweet, wisdom which comes from the source which we are all connected to, the Divine Spirit. Yup, I am reading Michael Singer’s book, “The Untethered Soul,” and a little book my new friend, Royce Williams, sent to me authored by his mom, Lee Williams, in 1994 entitled, “Heaven and Earth.” Both include, in their own way, the reminder (or new consciousness info for some) that we may not be bound to always listening to the 3 dimensional, fear based thinking, that is generated in the mind/ego.

What if we all practiced Mindfulness and we could:
Offer Unconditional Love and Acceptance
Be most aware of our real role in the Perfect Universe
Share our Wisdom Freely
Live in Joy
Avoid getting caught in the traps of fear and drama
Embrace Interconnection and Compassion
Remember the Impermanence of our 3 Dimensional World
Live in the Beginners Mind of Wonderment and Gratitude???

I have said this before and repeat again, YOU ARE MUCH GREATER THAN YOU MIGHT KNOW or at least give yourself credit for being! You are a Perfect hologram of the Divine Wisdom and can find peace and consciousness by going within. All you gotta do is quiet the yelling from your mind/ego (based in fear and insecurity) and ask the questions of your soul to find the answers which allow you to move forward toward higher consciousness and perhaps, Enlightenment (whatever that may be…) Michael Singer’s first 40 pages in his book offers a brilliant explanation, with out quoting research studies, regarding the way the mind and the spirit within you operates. He creates awareness that will change the way you “think” and better assist you in the process of finding the deeper truth of who you are.

Why is this important, you ask? ‘Cause I say so! AND, the fear and pain that comes from the survival instincts of your mind/ego can keep you from finding JOY and peace. Knowing and listening to your quiet small voice reduces your belief in separation and the concept you are distinct from all other things in our Universe. The Small voice helps you to reconnect with sources of wisdom which can assist you in the challenges you confront as you move along the path in this life.

It will not solve all your problems but the small voice can create the insight into how all of these learnings and interactions will benefit you, and so, benefit the Universal Spirit. We are not alone. We are all in this together. You can “circle the wagons” and continue to support the “rationale” of separation but, sooner or later, you will develop enough of your spiritual connection with the “Divine” so you will start to “Remember” who you really are and where you come from. And as Lee Williams says, embrace the “light and the dark” in awareness of the perfection and balance these seemingly opposites create.

If you desire a copy of Lee Williams’ book, “Heaven and Earth,” Please contact her son, Royce Williams at: – royce@miscreants.org – This book will cost $11.00 and includes shipping in the U.S.A. (Contact Royce for payment and to get your mailing address.

If you are READY and looking for a supportive community where you can share your story, your wisdom, and grow spiritually in a non-religious environment, consider Masters of the Journey.
You are a Blessing! You are a Master! Your wisdom from your life experience can have great value to other pilgrims on the path toward awakening and enlightenment.

The Masters of the Journey has events which are updated on our Facebook page which is found at: www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney Please comment on this blog and share, if appropriate. More of our blogs are based on spiritual consciousness and can be found at www.dstress.com/blog

Coming of Age: Being Role Models for Living!

We all have needed role models to help us know how to conduct ourselves through life. Sometimes these role models offer us a bright beacon of light to follow. Sometimes our role models are examples of what NOT to do in our lives. If you were born with any level of awareness, from early on in your life, you learned by observing the people and the culture which surrounded you. No matter what this was like, remember that YOU ARE NOT A VICTIM to this environment. You have a choice. You can choose the most positive direction to follow. You can choose whatever path that exists but remember that you will be responsible for what you end up doing and what you end up learning from the challenges which present themselves to you along the way.

Some people “Come of Age” when they enter a certain age, or school, or job, or relationship which asks them to be more responsible for their thoughts, beliefs, actions, and their feelings. For some, this comes earlier in life than for others. Eventually, we will all be reminded to remember the Divine Spirit from where we came and to attempt to live in the most ideal ways to serve the greatest good of all the Universe. This is a tall order to fill and many of us are not ready to be conscious enough to know how best to serve. We all have our role to play. Here we require role models. Are YOU willing to be the role model!!!???

Sometimes this means leading. Sometimes just listening. Sometimes it means living in a state of presence and being fully responsible for your actions. Sometimes it means demonstrating how to die with dignity and mindfulness. Yes, even letting go becomes an important role model… As important, as how to live mindfully. There comes an age in the current life when you contemplate the “end game.” Maybe when you start slowing down. Maybe when you body starts “giving out” or when a more serious health challenge arrives. If we live long enough, we all must face these transitions. How we deal with these changes and transitional events becomes a very important part for role models. Do we age as victims or do we take this responsibility seriously as the learning challenge we must experience AND share? Can we be as conscious and as present as we as role models are meant to be??? I am told that the Dalai Lama practices 7 times per day his own transition from this life so he can be the most present and mindful soul as he transitions. That is a huge commitment!

Whether you are “Brave” or filled with anxiety regarding your death matters less than if you can be most aware and open to sharing your feelings. Though I must say, in researching interviews with people who have had NDE’s (Near Death Experiences) most have the view that death is NOT the enemy or “scary” but the chance to move to the higher dimensions and freedom from the limitations of the body in the three dimensions we agree to exist within in our mortal life on the Earth plane. NDE survivors can live more fully without the anxiety of the unknown which death transitions entail. Add these interviews and conversations with NDE survivors to your list of role models in this life.

Being “Mindful” and “Present” are awesome qualities for amazing role models.
Qualities of Mindfulness, which are great to consider and to live by, include:
Awareness
Beginner’s Mind
Acceptance
Insight
Impermanence
Equanimity
Interconnection
Compassion
Gratitude
Joy

Do some research and check these out especially if you do not understand what these might mean. You will gain in consciousness as you explore what these qualities are and how they might become manifest in your life.

These qualities are easier said than done for most of us but worth considering and moving toward as we journey our sacred path toward “Enlightenment.” Taking steps which move us closer includes observing and then mimicking role models, in our own unique way, and then finding a way to be the best role model for other people who enter our lives. Never forget that with every step you take, in your soul and spirit you are perfect and contain the DNA of the Divine Spirit! You are not alone and the Universe can not exist without you…

As you find yourself “coming of Age” in your passage through life, consider being the supportive and master role model for all who experience you and your pilgrimage through this life…
You are a Blessing!

If you are READY and looking for a supportive community where you can share your story, your wisdom, and grow spiritually in a non-religious environment, consider Masters of the Journey.
You are a Blessing! You are a Master! Your wisdom from your life experience can have great value to other pilgrims on the path toward awakening and enlightenment.

The Masters of the Journey has events which are updated on our Facebook page which is found at: www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney Please comment on this blog and share, if appropriate. More of our blogs are based on spiritual consciousness and can be found at www.dstress.com/blog

How is Your Reflection?

When other people hold the mirror, how is your reflection? Not just your physical appearance, but who you “really” are as a person. In other words, what do people who know you, know about you? Is your self-image a reflection match of how other people feel about you? Remember, everyone has their unique perspective and their own unique opinion. Some people will be better observers and possibly more accurate. Some people will be more objective and not add their own challenges to describing your attributes, both your good qualities and your difficult ones.

It may not seem important, learning how other people feel about you. Your own personal feelings are most significant, however, we often are in denial or misjudge how we come across to others. Feedback is useful and often important. With objective feedback, we can make adjustments. We can learn from experience how others know us. With this input, we can decide if we wish to make any course corrections. Sometimes we can learn what is holding us back or, at the very least, what we could consider improving. As an example, in my early 20’s as I was participating in a “encounter group,” a member called me on my use of humor when the discussion got deeper and more difficult. At the time, I thought my humor was a positive and friendly attempt to entertain. What I learned from this feedback was that I was hiding behind my humor as a defense mechanism. This was very difficult for me to learn. I went into a depression and took 7 or 8 months to accept this fact and to integrate this into my life. To this day, when I use humor in a difficult encounter, I still ask myself whether this was defensive and something I need to examine or was it just my silly side bursting out inappropriately, as it commonly does… For me, this was a turning point and this reflection was very important, though difficult, for me.

Each of us are role models. We are beacons where we share our light and can assist other pilgrims to find their way along the path of self-discovery. Sometimes we create a reflection which is so positive, other people will want to follow or at least strive to move more in the direction you are projecting. Sometimes, we are a model of what NOT to do or to be. Long ago, I found out I could not make everyone like me, let alone, follow me. That was a rough lesson for my fragile ego and this changed my life. My outgrowth from this realization was that I needed to like ME and who I AM. Everyone is a different soul and does things differently. Some people behave in ways simply to get other people to “like” them even though this may be less healthy for their unique self. Living life as a popularity contest is one way to live. Personally, I do not choose this path. My insecurities are not often the driving force in how I present myself, though, like most people, I do enjoy positive attention.

The question remains, is your self-image a good reflection of who you really are? Are you willing to ask the question and receive the answer of your partner with little, or no, defensiveness? These struggles may lead to the most important lessons you have in this lifetime. Be present and learn through external reflection and self-reflection what you came here to learn! No matter where you are in self-discovery and spiritual development, you are a blessing! Even with your seeming imperfections or flaws, you are PERFECT just the way you are, though perhaps not above improvements.

If you are READY and looking for a supportive community where you can share your story, your wisdom, and grow spiritually in a non-religious environment, consider Masters of the Journey.
You are a Blessing! You are a Master! Your wisdom from your life experience can have great value to other pilgrims on the path toward awakening and enlightenment.

The Masters of the Journey has events which are updated on our Facebook page which is found at: www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney Please comment on this blog and share, if appropriate. More of our blogs are based on spiritual consciousness and can be found at www.dstress.com/blog

Long Lives – Short lives: Food for Thought

We come into our earthly existence with the agreements to work on certain challenges for our own spiritual development or for the benefit and development of the souls we interact with. There are certain lives/Incarnations which seem to require a longer investment in Earthly time and there are other incarnations where we appear for shorter amounts of Earth time. I have read that sometimes highly evolved souls show up and volunteer to incarnate for only short Earth lives for the benefit and challenges to other souls, as when a Baby dies early in life or a teenager dies in an accident or suicide, or a younger person parishes in a war. In these cases, the families grieve the loss of their precious young member and their lesson/challenge may be in working on their grief and finding the purpose of this difficult emotional event. What can be learned from this tragedy? (And, how can we find good ways to be of service after having to live through a difficult challenge from the “loss?”)

From personal experience, my wife seemed to die too young and seemed to not deserve her fate. However, as I reflect on her premature transition from her life, I know how much I have learned, how close our relationship became from this difficult experience, and I have been able to serve other people by sharing my stories as if this tragic lesson was learned for many souls to be touched. A parent losing a child seems much more challenging than the loss of my partner and so this may be a more significant learning opportunity. Life is precious! Life is short! Life is impermanent! Whether difficult to deal with or not, it is a blessing to have short lived souls enter and leave our lives for the gifts which these experiences bestow.

The most difficult group I have ever spoken with as a stress management trainer, was a support group for parents who had children died. Infant’s premature deaths, suicides, accidents, and illness robbed these parents of a more “natural” family relationship. The pain of these parents and their guilt due to their responsibility for their offspring was palpable. Yet, the learning from these tragedies was on the front runner for all involved. Sadness and grief are major life challenges. Appreciation of lives lived is an outcome which often can take long periods to resolve. We have all lost friends and family and have had major changes in our relationships. The vacuum which these losses create offer huge potential learnings for our conscious development and possible empathy for other people who travel similar paths.

My point is that we can learn a lot whether the person we are in relationship lives a long life or is only here for a relatively brief time. There is great value in learning from lessons of the short lives or long lives. Though very difficult to achieve, we can have equanimity in difficult situations and perhaps avoid getting sucked into the drama which can accompany a person transitioning from their current life. (At least, after the shock and grief from our loss has mellowed a bit with time and, hopefully, a normal adjustment into life without our friend or loved one…)

If you are READY and looking for a supportive community where you can share your story, your wisdom, and grow spiritually in a non-religious environment, consider Masters of the Journey.
You are a Blessing! You are a Master! Your wisdom from your life experience can have great value to other pilgrims on the path toward awakening and enlightenment.

The Masters of the Journey has events which are updated on our Facebook page which is found at: www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney Please comment on this blog and share, if appropriate. More of our blogs are based on spiritual consciousness and can be found at www.dstress.com/blog

All Events are Perfectly Neutral!

Are you ever “Triggered” by the events which you find in the world? Do you react and disagree with the actions taken by other people? Of course you do. You are human and most humans judge the events which you witness. However, there is another way to respond to the events which can “Trigger” you. There is a practice in Mindfulness which comes from Buddhism called observing in “Equanimity.” My understanding of this principle of practiced Mindfulness entails observing each experience in a nonjudgemental state of mind and emotion. Not easy for me or most humans in my culture! To be Neutral may mean not getting caught up in the “Drama” of a viewed life experience. This does not mean you approve of what is happening but perhaps you can be neutral in your reaction.

Wow, that is easier said than done. Perhaps, instead of jumping into judgement and a possible disagreement, you can ask a question, to yourself or possibly out loud, What has happened in your life to lead you (the person or event which triggered you) to this behavior or way of acting in this world? What can you learn to increase your consciousness to better serve in this situation? How can you Love the person who triggers you without agreeing with their behavior? When you are challenged by a person or an event ask, what am I supposed to be learning and can I find gratitude for this difficult learning? Life in this incarnation is not supposed to be a “walk in the park.” It is supposed to be a challenge to strengthen you and to develop your consciousness. (Yuck! I struggle with getting beat up by life just so I can learn a lesson, but that IS why I am here.) There is a reason the Divine Spirit offers you the opportunity to grow through these difficult events and experiences.

Be Mindful! You never know when the perfect person or event will be offered as you next best chance to find equanimity and balance without getting sucked into or triggered by the dramas which constantly flies around the Earthly plane.

AND, if you happen to react in emotion or anger or fear to an event do not beat yourself up. Say, “Wow,” and continue to learn from this reaction. Awareness of your reactivity is half the battle. Changing your response, over time and with practice, is the goal… Thanks! You are amazing. Your struggle is a beauty to behold. Go share it!

So all events are neutral but the filters by which these events are experienced makes people respond as people do. And, you can not control the way other people respond. That is “what makes horse races,” as my father might say.

If you are READY and looking for a supportive community where you can share your story, your wisdom, and grow spiritually in a non-religious environment, consider Masters of the Journey.
You are a Blessing! You are a Master! Your wisdom from your life experience can have great value to other pilgrims on the path toward awakening and enlightenment.

The Masters of the Journey has events which are updated on our Facebook page which is found at: www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney Please comment on this blog and share, if appropriate. More of our blogs are based on spiritual consciousness and can be found at www.dstress.com/blog

BTW (By the Way), this lesson described above is MY constant challenge… I get triggered and then I laugh at myself for getting caught up in the drama… I am far from having this mastered… ALL Events are Neutral!

Your Enlightenment and Your Environment

Have you considered the best environment for developing your “Enlightenment?” Does your “spiritual awakening” require a special environment? Does Enlightenment only come for those who sit in a cave, undistracted, over a period of time Which creates the solitude required to lead you to the “Light?”

Some experienced, and a bit rigid, (want to be) enlightened masters might say that solitude offers less distractions and a better “space” to go within, to find the Universal Divine Spirit. AND, I believe that this can work for some people but not for everyone, every time enlightenment “hits.” So, I began looking for some of the words used to describe a pilgrimage into the “cave” of undistracted solitude. Words that might be used to demonstrate a reduced distracted environment might include: Isolation, Vigil, Seclusion, Solitude, reclusive, withdrawn, possibly: Celibate and Abstaining from physical pleasures, Contemplative, Introspection, Reflection, Consideration, and Focused. These concepts can make it difficult and exclusive for many people running around in my culture. Are we all doomed to be un-enlightened? Perhaps…

Or, are there other environments or circumstances which can allow for a “spontaneous Awakening” like a NDE (Near Death Experience) or an “Ah Ha” moment in meditation or in experiencing a major “insight” in life (perhaps a STE (Spiritual Transformative Experience.)) An example for me was when I hiked up into Evolution Meadow and viewed the surrounding mountains and sky with a surprising, for me at 25 years of age, insight of being in “God’s Cathedral,” realization. (Since at that time, I would never say the word “God” let alone find an experience that would trigger me to use this word.) Can activities and interpersonal interactions lead you to a moment of enlightenment? Once you have had a real moment of knowing the state of Grace or feeling the Universal “connection” to the “source” and all a “oneness” with other souls, you can never go back into complete un-enlightenment. You can NOT get the Genie back in the bottle… Though, what you do with this new insight varies and may take a very long time to surface as a useful gift to be shared.

Some “moments” of insight have come for me in deep meditation but never in a cave of solitude. For me, a private act of self-discovery, realization, or a “remembrance” have come in a variety of environments and with varying degrees of social interaction. Though these have been private in the moment, many of these experiences were not in deep isolation or seclusion. Oddly, sometimes I focus better with distractions around me, as if I would trust someone else to protect me (feeling safer) and I can “let go” of my defenses in a group. (Not always true, but sometimes…)

Your path to Enlightenment will be unique for you. The environment will be of your creation. A quiet, meditative environment may prove helpful but may not be required. Keep your eyes open for any possible “awakening” (perhaps in a Zen like way.) Allow your soul/heart to be receptive to new experience and insights. Feel your guidance which may lead you to a chance of a lifetime and a special moment of “Grace!” You are on the path, whether you know it or not. You are here, in this life, to experience and to learn. AND, when your “Awakening” happens, you are here to share this wisdom and your most recent leaps into consciousness.

Tip for Enlightenment:
No matter which path you take either as an aesthetic using deprivation to assist you in focusing or as a seeker bouncing off all the other people you bump in to in the “warm dryer called life,” you can help to clarify your consciousness by being mindful, present, and open. To be aware of the possibilities is more than half the battle. Being “closed” to new thoughts, Wisdom, Feelings, insights, conscious “knowing,” or simply the “remembering,” will slow your process and pilgrimage down. It is not always an easy task but being open AND present to enjoy, the “JOY,” can assist you greatly. All of these qualities are assisted through meditation and begin by following your breath. Slowly inhale, pause, and then slowly exhale… Attempt to feel the cool air as you breathe in and then the warm breath as you slowly exhale. Continue to breathe slowly and most consciously. Allow your thoughts and energy to flow as freely as possible. Perhaps you can “open” your 6th and 7th chakras for a better connection to the Divine Spirit. You may even attempt to allow yourself to elevate (out through your Crown Chakra) to an 8th or 9th chakra and higher dimensions. Paula Forget’s book, “Guided to the Higher Realms,” may be a useful guide to assist you to expand your consciousness to what is possible. (Check her website at: www.paulaforget/inspired for more information.)

It may also be useful to practice holding the intention that you are open and available for the Guidance to and the experience of an “Awakening!” The Divine Spirit surrounds each of us. It is embedded in each of us. A dark cave is NOT the only place where this unconditional love and energy abides…

YOU are amazing and perfect no matter where you are on your path! YOU are a blessing. Thank you for being YOU! In any way possible, allow yourself to be Open, Present, and Mindful of the wonderful adventures you find yourself within (even the challenging ones…) Whether you are actively seeking “Enlightenment” or not, you are still moving along that path.

If you are READY and looking for a supportive community where you can share your story, your wisdom, and grow spiritually in a non-religious environment, consider Masters of the Journey.
You are a Blessing! You are a Master! Your wisdom from your life experience can have great value to other pilgrims on the path toward awakening and enlightenment.

The Masters of the Journey has events which are updated on our Facebook page which is found at: www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney Please comment on this blog and share, if appropriate. More of our blogs are based on spiritual consciousness and can be found at www.dstress.com/blog

Seeing Ourselves as Separate and Finding Our Way Back to Oneness

Our language and our culture teaches us that we are separate and unique. Our language compares and judges as we fight to describe events and things. We are caught in the limitations as a survival mechanism which triggers an “every man for himself” mentality. And, when we become more fully conscious, we “remember” that we are all part of larger, perfect divine consciousness.

Perhaps our minds are too limited by the three dimensional experience we seem to know. We are separated in our skin enclosed bodies. When our parents give us language to describe the world, we are taught comparisons because words are too limiting to describe the “wholeness” and the inter-connections we have. Just to test this out, how can you accurately define: the sweet taste of a ripe pineapple, or define the color green, or really define the feeling of love. These may be too difficult due to the limitations words and our language places on these descriptions.

BUT, it gets even worse when we look to explain or define: unconditional love, “oneness,” or the expansive freedom of the Divine Spirit filling the Universe. If, and when, you have a “STE” (Spiritually Transformative Experience) your consciousness will shift and expand. You will never be the same. You can not fit the Genie back in the bottle and your transformation may take time for this “reintegration” back into your current incarnation to fully begin to grasp YOUR GREATNESS! Your limitations begin to fade as you re-awaken to the knowing that your soul and spirit are larger than your 3 dimensional mind may be able to understand.

Perhaps the most important concept to “Remember” will be the concept that you are NOT separate. You are an important part of the whole Divine Spirit. You are connected to all other souls and things existing in our Universe. When “Enlightenment” occurs you will know that every person you encounter is another part of YOU and that, whether you like it or not, we are all in this Divine lesson together. We are here to learn and to grow and the find Joy. We are here to serve and support the other souls we bump in to on our path toward higher consciousness.

Seeing separation is part of the challenge. “Knowing” our connections is what Enlightenment includes. We are all on the path to develop by Remembering our Divinity the highest levels of consciousness which are possible to us in this lifetime… Though challenging to fully understand, we are not separate. Personally, I struggle to “Remember” my Oneness 24-7. For me, there are only fragments of remembered insight, but these are a starting place because now that I know oneness, I can NOT go back to live less consciously in a life separation.

If you are READY and looking for a supportive community where you can share your story, your wisdom, and grow spiritually in a non-religious environment, consider Masters of the Journey. You are NOT alone or separate. You can come home to a community of fellow seekers of enlightenment.
You are a Blessing! You are a Master! Your wisdom from your life experience can have great value to other pilgrims on the path toward awakening and enlightenment.

The Masters of the Journey has events which are updated on our Facebook page which is found at: www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney Please comment on this blog and share, if appropriate. More of our blogs are based on spiritual consciousness and can be found at www.dstress.com/blog